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The MarsBoard joins the line-up of cheap and affordable dev boards based on the AllWinner A10 SOC. (via Marsboard)

 

It’s time to add another board into the rapidly expanding line-up of AllWinner A10 based development boards - the MarsBoard. This high performance and cost effective mini PC board joins the likes of the highly similar CubieBoard and A10-Olinuxino dev boards - all putting the AllWinner A10 SOC to good use.

 

The MarsBoard’s high-speed ARM Cortex A8 processor operates at 1.2 GHz and is accompanied by a 3D capable Mali400 GPU. 1GB of DDR3 RAM is integrated into the board’s circuitry with 100MB of that supply dedicated for GPU use. 4GB of embedded NAND storage is pre-installed, 1.5 GB of which is available for use after taking the Android partition into account. A SATA port and an SDHC capable microSD port ensure users the flexibility to expand their memory storage options as they wish. GPIO headers (2 x 2.0mm, 140 pins total) are also provided for stacking additional modules to the MarsBoard. Network communication happens through an integrated 10/100 Ethernet module; USB WiFi cards are supported, but not included in the package. Two USB ports are stacked above one another with an additional USB OTG port.

 

Power is supplied by a 5V/2A DC jack or through an external device using a USB to power cable. Once energized. the tiny 80mm x 55mm board boots from either an Android/Ubuntu/Fedora/Linux flashed SD card or internal storage device (NAND).

 

Like most other project boards, the MarsBoard provides hobbyists and developers the ability to build a powerful mini media PC. Video outputs at full HD (1080p) quality and a 3.5mm analog audio output delivers the sound. Throw on a wireless mouse and keyboard and you can have yourself a cheap and effective Linux/Android pc for internet browsing, gaming, or app development. Thanks to its similarity in design to the CubieBoard, anyone having trouble setting up their MarsBoard can head over to the Cubie Quick Start Guide for more info on how to get it running.

 

The MarsBoard, currently at a limited stock of 80+ units, is available on Hayou Electronics for an affordable $49.90 with free shipping. The above package will get you a MarsBoard, SATA cable, USB to Power cable, and mini USB to USB host cable.

 

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